Pop-ups and markets are nothing new to retail, we have seen them everywhere from large retailers to setting up temporary stores, a fabulous community of small brands collaborating in an experiential retail space, to a thriving community of budding brands setting up one-day pop up events for their community of loyal customers.
In a noisy digital space where standing out is fast becoming a game of monopoly, constantly fighting with algorithms, it is becoming more difficult for brands to stand out from their competition.
Furthermore, with customers increasingly craving to make connections with the brands they are purchasing from, having some sort of physical presence for your brand is fast becoming an important part of the customers experience and buying decisions.
The benefits of short term pop-up shops
Like any promotional or marketing campaign, Pop up shops are great for generating awareness and growth for the brand quickly, and if your brand resonates with customers, you are likely to grow your business much quicker than those who don’t have a physical retail presence.
My OWN story as a brand founder still surprises clients!
In fact, my story SHOCKS people, especially given what I teach retail brands to start, grow and scale!
Here’s my secret…
I didn’t have a website for the first 2 years of the launch of my fashion product business!
All of my revenue came from physical pop up shops, on the ground collaborations and events!
Once I knew just how powerful this was, I continued that strategy and it literally catapulted my growth and brand awareness just from physical pop up shops and events, elegantly building my community of loyal customers and just good old fashioned – getting out there.
Of course, when I finally launched the website for my fashion business – I already had a lovely community of loyal customers ready to buy from me!
Disclaimer – I am not recommending that you ditch your website – Lol!
Acquiring new customers with pop-up shops
Most brand founders building an online business know just HOW hard this is. Bringing new potential customers into your world, then getting them to know, like and trust your brand enough to BUY from you can be the one thing which costs you time, money and SANITY!
We all experience the pain of that on a daily basis as small businesses.
With the ever increasing noise as more and more people dive into entrepreneurship – the customer journey is becoming longer and it takes longer for the customer to build that know, like and trust factor enough to buy from you.
So creating a seamless ‘clicks-to-bricks’ omni channel for your customer journey can be incredibly beneficial for those potential customers who may ‘like’ something about you, but haven’t quite been convinced enough to hit that buy button!
It’s also great for your brand credibility and perception in your target market.
Gaining valuable feedback
Once, of the most valuable things about selling to customers in a physical space, are the lessons you learn from the experience.
Pop-ups are a fantastic place for brands to make mistakes, learn, evolve their products and test new products. Because the best lesson you will learn – is from the customer themselves.
Now this doesn’t mean that you pounce on every customer that interacts with your products and demand they give you feedback.
You’ve got to listen to your your customers, by watching them…watch how they interact with your product, watch their body language and really listen to the questions that they are asking you…if you listen closely – you’ll hear their objections, and if you are really paying close attention – you’ll hear them telling you exactly what they want from you instead!
Don’t underestimate the power of listening to your customers! They should always be placed at the very heart of your business!
If you are ever looking to pitch your products to retailers, then this valuable experience is absolutely necessary!
Convert existing customers
We all know that a customer who has bought from you once, is highly likely to buy from you again so building customer loyalty in to your customer journey is a no-brainer. But so many brands are so much more obsessed with bringing new customers into their world and increasing their followers on social media when really they could spend more time nurturing their existing customers and keep them coming back to you.
The most successful businesses are great at creating raving fans and customer loyalty to keep them coming back for more.
We all know when we have those customers, they are the ones who comment on every post, turn up to all of your events, recommend you to their friends and family and are always waiting in anticipation of your next new launch and generally can’t get enough of you!
Now go and create more of them!
Drive sales with pop-up shops
Despite the last 2 years where we’ve seen an influx in online buying due to the pandemic and various lockdowns, physical retail still remains stronger than digital retail and us humans need to have that tactile experience of being able to physically touch and feel products and have that all important brand experience.
Pop-up shops are a fantastic opportunity to create unique ways to engage with your customer and boost sales for your business. Because the temporary nature of them gives your customers a sense of urgency and they are less likely to delay purchasing, especially if the brand has done a great job in creating some ‘FOMO’ offers and marketing for the event to entice the customers to make that purchase on the day.
Networking at pop-ups
Networking with other like-minded brand founders is a great way to expose your brand, create collaborations and alliances.
It also goes without saying that collaborating with other like minded brands with similar audiences is another great way to tap into other brands audiences and create even more noise and excitement together when promoting the event!
Finally, creating an omnichannel presence for your customers is an absolute MUST to be successful. Combining both physical and digital platforms can catapult your growth in this ever evolving retail space where we are seeing this post-pandemic world of ‘clicks to bricks’ phenomenon where previously online only retailers are now moving to physical locations!